Line of inquiry: How can we use mindfulness to help us focus and relax?
Grade range: 8-12
Group size: A small size of 20-25 students works best
Materials: Yoga mats if available, if not, some cushions on the floor, and comfortable clothing
Time: 15-60 minutes
Skills: Critical thinking skills, communication, cooperation
Space: A classroom, gym, stage, wherever there’s room to move and relax
Directions: This is a simple meditation. Students and facilitators may choose to make it part of daily or weekly practice. Facilitators can provide visualization guidance to connect to current curriculum. Students should sit cross-legged on the floor, either in a circle or in rows. The facilitator will demonstrate proper breathing; five-count breath in, and five-count breath out. The facilitator can add visualization and relaxation to the session. Students will close their eyes and continue controlled breathing, feeling that breath all through their bodies, from the tops of the heads to the tips of the toes.
Extensions: The facilitator may choose to add this activity to a daily or weekly regimen, preparation for testing, to relax back into school, work, or play. Practicing mindfulness is a healthy way to deal with the complexities of life.
Reflection: How do you feel after practiced breathing? Is this something you can fdo on your own or with others?
Notes: Disruptive students may not be able to fully participate in this activity. Assess if they might do better using another technique to relax.